Heinrich hopes proposed legislation will help reduce gun violence
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sen. Martin Heinrich thinks he has finally crafted legislation that achieves a balance – protecting the rights of gun owners while implementing a widely supported way to regulate certain guns.
Heinrich introduced the Gas-Operated Semi-Automatic Firearms Exclusion (GOSAFE) Act in Washington, D.C. last week.
The legislation has been in the works since the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas.
“I believe it was important for me to be part of the solution,” Heinrich said. “Both as a gun owner and an engineer who is familiar, and let’s face it, I’ve shot many of these weapons.”
The central idea has to do with guns what’s called a gas-operated action. Heinrich is seeking to regular the larger guns that can fire faster, and fire more than 10 shots without reloading.
“I really think it’s a fair bill,” said Miranda Viscoli, with New Mexicans Against Gun Violence. She got involved in this kind of work after a mass shooting in 2012.
“When the Sandy Hook shooting happened, I had kids that were that same age, or close to that same age, and didn’t understand,” Viscoli said.
She wants people to take a hard look at the proposal before making a judgment.
There are many exceptions to the legislation. For example, small caliber guns – like a .22 or semi-automatic shotguns – are left out. Guns that have a fixed capacity of 10 rounds or less are also left out of the proposed regulations.
- .22 caliber rimfire or less firearms
- Bolt action rifles
- Semi-automatic shotguns
- Recoil-operated handguns
- Any rifle with a permanently fixed magazine of 10 rounds or less
- Any shotgun with a permanently fixed magazine of 10 rounds or less
- Any handgun with a permanently fixed magazine of 15 rounds or less
For more information on the GOSAFE Act, including the bill’s text and a fact sheet, click here.